Best Sonic Ice Maker & Nugget Ice Machines in 2020 – Reviews & Guides

Have you ever run out of ice on a hot summer day? If yes, you know how sickening it is. You will then have to walk to the nearby local store to buy nugget ice cubes or chewable ice. 

However, having sonic ice makers or nugget ice makers save you the trouble and time. If you acquire one, you can access these cubes by just pressing a button. 

Even so, determining the ideal one for you can be overwhelming. In this review, we present to you the best sonic ice maker & nugget ice maker machines.

Our Top Picks - Comparison

Prices and images pulled from the Amazon Product Advertising API on:

1. Manitowoc CNF-0201A-L

Best Versatility

Nugget ice makers are ideal for cocktails. However, the Manitowoc helps you with both the water and the best nugget ice.

These sonic ice machines feature the best stylish design you can get. All this thanks to the lovely metal finish. For this reason, they fit well in your stainless-steel counterpart appliances.

Further, you acquire this sonic ice machine with a self-contained, air-cooled condenser. Its most significant selling point has to do with its high ice production. In other words, it makes up to 315 lbs. in a day. After starting it up, it doesn't take long to begin the production process.

Its bin can store up to 10 lbs. of nugget ice. Apart from that, it's also stress-free to use. Just select what you want between ice, water, or both. Then place your glass under the spigot against the lever.

This snowflake and nugget ice dispenser will help you produce refreshing quality water. With such high production capacity, this product is ideal for gyms, restaurants, and homes.

Pros

  • Attractive design
  • High production and storage capacity
  • Dispenses water as well as nugget ice
  • Build quality is excellent
  • 2-year warranty
  • Lever water dispenser

Cons

  • Quite costly

2. Scotsman N0622A-1 Prodigy Plus

Best Production Capacity

These sonic ice machines are robust industrial designs. The Scotsman ice comes as a large metallic gray cube. Also, it features big slider doors that allow you to reach the ice container.

This nugget ice maker do not have a fancy design. By this, it boasts of a heavy-duty professional vibe. Even without a shiny appearance, you cannot miss noticing its robust construction.

The Scotsman ice maker weighs 172 pounds. As such, it is one of the best stationary nugget ice machines you can get. It produces up to 643 pounds per day.

With such high production, it's almost impossible to run out of nugget ice. You can get this product in hotels, gyms, and restaurants. It's one of the best commercial nugget ice machines out there.

Also, this Scotsman ice maker has bonus features that keep the nugget ice or water clean and safe to boot. Most of its inner parts feature anti-bacterial materials. Hence, it avoids contamination between cleanings.

Also, this nugget ice machine includes a system of sensors that help you with machine status and diagnostics.

Pros

  • Produces over 600 pounds of nugget ice in a day
  • Intelligent and smart operation module
  • QR code on the side for the spec sheets and user manual
  • Robust construction
  • Uses anti-bacterial materials

Cons

  • Costly
  • Very heavy hence stationary

3. Euhomy IM-02

Best Commercial

The Sonic Ice o matic Euhomy IM-02 is the best deal you can get for your home, canteens, bars, restaurants, and places that need a steady supply of nugget ice or water. The reason being, it has a low-set profile, high production capacity, and simple controls.

It makes an ideal under-counter nugget ice maker. This home sonic product can produce 45-cube batches of diamond-like ice nuggets within 13-20 minutes. At the same time, it can hold up to 33 pounds.

In a day, the sonic Euhomy can produce up to 100 pounds. The capacity is quite remarkable since most under-counter nugget ice makers deliver less.

This home sonic appliance weighs 67 pounds. Its footprint, on the other hand, is 17.3" by 15.7". With such, it's perfect for any standard size counters. When comparing it to other under-counter counterparts, it is more compact and lighter. For this reason, it requires less space and works relatively faster.

Manitowoc equips their products with a delay function, and the IM-02 is no exception. It is possible to pause the production process for 4, 12, or 24 hours.

It also includes an illuminated power button alongside LED lights. These lights facilitate clear viewing. Besides that, its full-bin indicator that warns you when the bin is about to be full.

The machine's design only requires vinegar and water to run through the cycle for cleaning.  You don't have to use a towel or sponge for cleaning the insides. Instead, it just needs vinegar and water to run through the cycle.

Using hand screws, you can detach its bin, filter, and other parts. 

Pros

  • Durable construction
  • Long-lasting ice
  • High yield
  • Ample storage room
  • Designed for limited space
  • Approved for outdoor use

Cons

  • Noisy operation
  • Quite heavy

4. IKICH Electric Ice Machine

Best Countertop Ice Machine

The portable ice IKICH features a unique design and an LED display on the tank.

With straightforward controls, you can select the different functions. The features include different ice sizes: large and small bullet ice. It also has an automatic standby and warning for low water levels.

It also has a clear window, which you can use to monitor the progress without opening it. For best performance, regularly run its occasional cleaning cycle.

This pellet machine for making ice nuggets comes with a 2-liter water reservoir. Its ice basket holds up to 1.5 lbs. of ice. It's also lightweight, weighing just 17.35 pounds.

About its production, it produces 26 pounds of ice per day. It is pretty fast, and can make nine-cube batches in just six minutes.

Between the wall and the basket, this product features a thick PU foam layer. By this, it delivers excellent insulation. Then again, this appliance also comes with a BPA-free ice plastic scoop.

Lastly, its DC fan and compressor are low noise. Most of its components feature plastic, but it features a stainless-steel finish. For that reason, it still blends in with your other kitchen appliances.

Pros

Cons

  • A little slow

5. COSTWAY Ice Machine

Well Designed Ice Maker

COSTWAY has a good renowned legacy in the industry. It delivers several excellent ice makers with different features in the market.

The Costway is among the excellent portable options you can get. It is also very budget-friendly, reliable, robust, and highly efficient.

It doesn't feature stain-less steel but instead features ABS plastic. With such a resilient plastic crust, it is difficult for this appliance to get dents and scratches.

Most people like it because of its quick ability to make ice. It produces a full batch in 8 minutes. In other words, it has a production capacity of 26 pounds of ice in one day. The ability is remarkable as there are other large models unable to produce such an amount.

It features an ice basket with a 1.5 pounds capacity, and includes warning lights. The lights also warn when the appliance runs out of water or when it's on/off. Once full, it pushes the machine to a halt.

Besides, it features a half-gallon water reservoir. You need to keep refilling it for continuous ice production.

Pros

  • Lightweight and portable
  • Quick ice production
  • Quiet operation
  • User-friendly
  • Reasonable price
  • Easy to clean

Cons

  • None (as of reviewing)

6. Frigidaire EFIC102

Budget-friendly

The Frigidaire EFICI02 ice maker is quite remarkable. It delivers everything you'd expect in a top-quality package while being cost-friendly.

It's quite fast. In about six minutes, it can produce nine-cube batches of bullet-shaped ice. The ice production adds to 1.1 lbs. of ice in one hour, which's quite efficient.

The Frigidaire type of ice maker has a footprint of 15" by 11". With a weight of 19 pounds, it's quite pretty small and lightweight. Hence, it uses less space and is stress-free to carry around.

It includes two ice size options: medium and small. This soft ice nugget maker can hold 1.2 pounds of ice and 2.2 liters of water. The capacity is ideal for small gatherings.

The machine features plastic. However, it has a stylish finish and could fit among your stainless kitchen appliances. It's also available in a variety of colors: silver, red, and copper. It also comes with a one-year warranty.

This pebble ice maker is straightforward to operate and features a back lit LED panel. It also includes a few buttons and warning lights. Thus, you'll know when it's either empty or almost full.

The machine is also safer and quicker to clean than side drain models. Thanks to its underside drain plug. Also, its cooling fun is quitter than that of most models.

Pros

  • Simple to use
  • Easy to fill and drain
  • Lightweight and compact
  • Reasonable price
  • Automatic shut-off
  • Quiet cooling

Cons

  • Needs regular cleaning
  • Few color choices

7. Opal Nugget Ice Maker

Best Operation

These home nugget ice machine feature a remarkable design with an open window. By this, they allow you to see the ice forming and how full it can get.

The machine doesn't need a secure water supply. Thus, you can set it up in your home wherever you want. In one hour, it can make up to 1 pound of ice.

You can operate this ice making machine with your mobile device. It features Bluetooth connectivity. With the FirstBuild app, you can conveniently turn it on or off.

This home nugget ice maker is also among the most lightweight you can get. You can use it on your counter. Also, with a decent power supply, you can quickly bring it along for tailgating.

The nugget i c e maker comes with a small bin able to hold up to 3 pounds of ice ideal for small gatherings.

This product delivers a ton of features. Thus, you'll find it among high end and expensive icemaker options. Unfortunately, it comes with a limited 6-month warranty. Another drawback, this nugget ice maker doesn't include a refrigeration unit.

Pros

  • Portable and stylish design
  • Makes 1-pound in one hour
  • Possible to control with
  • Bluetooth
  • Reasonable price

Cons

  • Includes a six months warranty
  • Lack refrigeration in its ice bin

8. hOmeLabs HME010019N

Best sonic icemaker for the home

If you are looking for a pebble ice maker machine, the hOmeLabs HME010019N is an ideal pick.

It features plastic and weighs just 19.3 pounds. Also, it has a footprint of 12.9" by 9.5". It is among the compact and lightweight designs in the market.

Its capacity is not as much as that of commercial ice makers. In just six minutes, this home sonic ice machine can produce eight-cube batches of chewable ice. In one hour, it produces about 26 pounds of ice.

The hOmeLabs ice o matic is fast, and incorporates a high-speed, low-noise exhaust fan. By this, it carries away any excess heat from the coils.

It features a vaster storage bin that supports 1.5 pounds of fresh chewable ice at a time. Such amount is enough for eight or at least six drinks.

About safety concerns, this home ice maker has certification from ETL. Therefore, it is safe for use.

Pros

  • Modern design
  • User-friendly
  • Affordable
  • Low-noise operation

Cons

  • Plastic construction
  • Inadequate ice production in the first five rounds

Buying Guide

best sonic ice maker and nugget ice machine

Without a doubt, there are multiple excellent chewable ice makers in the market. But which one suits you best? Different soft ice makers come with varying features and functions.

To help you identify the excellent choice, consider the following factors before buying an ice maker:

1) Size:

Buy an ice o matic that best fits the available space. It can fit underneath the counter or on the counter top. Under the counter ice makers are quite large.

Also, consider portability. Large pellet ice makers are bulky and difficult to carry around. Smaller counterparts are convenient to carry around.

If you want ice production on a grand scale, consider the storage capacity of the unit. In such a case, find a soft ice maker able to store a decent amount of ice.

2) Ice Quality:

Ice quality is vital, especially when producing ice for commercial purposes. Good ice quality will make your drinks taste and look better than the average.

Commercial ice makers are perfect when it comes to ice quality.

3) Versatility:

The versatility factor should be of crucial consideration if you are in business. Different customers have varying preferences. Also, various drinks need different types of ice.

Commercial ice makers are excellent regarding versatility and different ice types.

4) Installation:

Small and portable crushed ice makers don't necessarily require installation. However, large counterparts might need a drain and pump for correct installation.

Consider the setup of your home and figure out the best sonic ice machines. Most ice maker brands have professionals who can guide you through the installation process.

5) Warranty:

Sonic ice makers and nugget ice makers are generally quite costly. Therefore, you ought to consider the warranty service for extra peace of mind.

Small and portable ice makers may not have the most extended warranties. However, they still allow you some time for you to experiment with the product.

Many warranties do not cover any damages resulting from sunlight exposure or outdoor use.

Frequently Asked Questions (F.A.Q.)

Which ice machine makes sonic ice?

You can use any good sonic ice machine or nugget ice makers to make sonic ice. You can acquire chewable ice bits to help in the production of snow cones as well as other iced treats. However, the best sonic ice maker should be one that will not produce much noise. 

How do you make sonic ice at home?

There are at least two options of making ice at home. Firstly, you can acquire the best nugget ice maker that is within your budget. Alternatively, you may need to get ice bags from sonic directly. This second option is far much cheaper.

How much is a bag of ice at Sonic?

You can get ice nuggets from sonic in either 5-pound or 10-pound bags. The price ranges from $1.50 to $5 per bag, but that depends on your location. In some locations, however, they may offer you a cup of ice for free.

What kind of ice maker do hospitals use?

Scotsman ice machines are common in many hospitals for making nugget ice. Other hospitals also use sonic ice machines to make nugget ice. The production of the ice is made under controlled temperature, to produce chewable ice.

How can I keep sonic ice from freezing?

Sonic ice makers do not come with any refrigeration. By this, they ensure the ice is chewable. As a result, the ice doesn't freeze, become hard, or stick together.

My ice machine stopped producing ice. How can I fix it?

In most cases, your soft ice maker stops operating because of the water running out. Check to find out if that's the case. If so, just refill your ice o matic.


Another reason may have to do with the ice maker freezing up. To fix this problem, try:

  • Replacing the water filter
  • Upping the freezer temperature
  • Cleaning the inlet water valve
  • Thawing the appliance fill tube

Why are nugget ice makers so costly?

Most people think of crushed ice makers as simple machines. Yeah, they may seem so. However, they are even more complicated than a standard refrigerator.


The reason being, they feature fairly pricey materials and parts. These include control boards, stainless, copper, compressors, pumps, and refrigerants.

How should I clean my nugget ice machine?

Some, e.g., the Manitowoc CNF-0201A-L, have a high-tech self-cleaning mechanism. Anytime it needs cleaning, it notifies you. Then, you can authorize it to start the process.


For the others, you need to consult the specific manual for your ice maker manual. Then follow the instructions.

What is the best ice machine for the home?

The best nugget ice machines vary with different users. In other words, it comes down to different preferences and needs as well. What I think is the best option for me might not be what you like.

What is the main benefit of a nugget ice machines?

Nugget ice is probably the most preferred type of ice. For an ice buff who expects to produce some, investing in a nugget ice maker is wise. By this, you have access to high-quality ice with just a single button click.

How small are portable nugget ice makers?

Portable pellet ice makers are small enough to fit on top of your counter. At the same time, they are large enough to hold a significant amount of ice. Most portable soft models are slimmer than 12 inches and stand below 15 inches.

Can I use my sonic ice maker outdoors?

Yes. You can use a portable sonic ice maker anywhere as long as there's a power source. Nonetheless, you should understand that extreme temperatures cause the appliance to strain in producing and making ice.

Final Thoughts

Our top pick is the Manitowoc CNF-0201A-L. Other than its attractive design, it also has a high ice production capacity.

Moreover, it boasts of excellent construction and is a water dispenser to boot. It's also very straightforward to operate and has a large storage bin.

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Jerry Boyce is an Executive Editor of Foodplusice.com. He is an incurable writer and an award-winning web scholar who loves to travel. He is fond of ice making products and love drinking coffee & beer more than anything else. Read More >>

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